"I can steal anything." After Gen's bragging lands him in the king's prison, the chances of escape look slim. Then the king's scholar, the magus, needs the thief's skill for a seemingly impossible task--to steal a hidden treasure from another land.
To the magus, Gen is just a tool. But Gen is a trickster and a survivor with a plan of his own.
I read Turner's trilogy (when it was just a trilogy) a couple years ago, and loved all three! When her fourth book came out, I happily began reading...only to realize that I barely remembered the minor characters or settings. And so I had to read her series for a second time.
Which is brilliant, because The Thief is one of those brilliant books that, in the end, leaves you sputtering, "What!? But how? That means that--! Oh my word, and so he--! MY MIND IS IS PIECES." Best of all, it is one of those mind-blowing twists that, upon reread, is totally set up. Turner is a genius.
The countries of Sounis, Eddis, and Attolia are vaguely Greek, which makes the fantasy feel a lot more rooted and easy to picture. The magus, Pol, Ambiades, and Sophos are well-conceived minor characters. When they aren't forcing Gen around and treating him like a slave (okay, even then), they are very nice! They all have their own motivations and stories, which fleshes out the whole thing quite nicely.
And then there is Gen. I love him. I have the softest of spots for tricksters, mostly because I love intelligence and confidence. Gen is whiney and charming, vain and kind. Awesome. Can't wait to read more about him in the next books!
Five out of five hidden temples.
Release Date: December 2005
Reading Level: Grade 6+
Where In Dunlap Public Library's Collection: YPL TUR